Toll reaches 76 on Day 60 of uprising; above 150 injured during clashes; pro-freedom rallies held across south Kashmir
Srinagar: Government forces shot dead a youth and injured more than 100 people who were protesting against nocturnal raids on their homes, at Seer Hamdan area of Anantnag district on Tuesday, the 6oth day of the raging anti-India uprising.
The slain youth, identified as Naseer Ahmad Bhat son of Ghulam Hassan Bhat, was shot at with a volley of pellets.
“As soon as he (Naseer) fell down after being hit by pellets we took him to the hospital on shoulders but doctors (at SDH Seer) declared him dead,” a local youth told Kashmir Reader over phone.
A doctor posted at SDH Seer said that the youth had multiple pellet injuries on his body.
“He seemed to have been shot from a close range as the pellets had penetrated deep into his body,” the doctor said.
Naseer’s was the 76th civilian killing since July 9, following the killing of Hizb commander Burhan Muzaffar Wani in an encounter along with two of his associates.
More than 11,000 civilians have also been injured by the forces during numerous potests and clashes . As many as 50 of them lost eyesight.
Witnesses said that fierce clashes erupted between youths and government forces in the village during the night hours when government forces raided the village to arrest “stone-pelters”.
However, they said, locals came out of their houses and resisted the forces and held demonstrations in the area. The forces attacked the protesters with pellet ammunition and tear smoke canisters that left more than 100 protesters, one critically, injured.
“At about 3am as many as 23 vehicles of forces entered our village to carry out arrests. But within minutes scores of people including women came out on streets and protested against the nocturnal raids,” said Amir (he wanted his first name only to be quoted), an attendant of one of the injured.
People then protested on Khanabal-Pahalgam road.
After facing heavy stone pelting from the youth, the forces, locals alleged, barged into houses and ransacked the household goods and beat-up inmates in the village. The injured were either treated locally or were rushed to nearby health facilities.
“We received a total of 90 injured, most of them with pellet injuries and among them at least 40 people were brought to the hospital during the night hours and rest were brought here after fresh clashes erupted during the morning hours,” a para-medic posted at Seer Hamdan hospital said.
“Four of the injured were referred to district hospital Anantnag, where from a woman identified as Jameela who has received serious injuries in eye and head, was referred to SKIMS hospital,” a doctor at district hospital Anantnag said.
Later, thousands of people from several villages of the district participated in two separate funeral prayers for the slain youth.
More than 15 civilians were injured during clashes between youths and government troops at several places across Baramulla district. At least six people were injured in Patten area when forces fired pellets into a protest.
At Azad Gunj Bridge of Baramulla, four people sustained injuries when youths clashed with troops deployed in the locality.
Earlier in the day, thousands of people participated in the last rites of slain youth Musaib Majeed Nagoo alias Asif at Sonawani village of Kupwara district. Musaib succumbed to injuries on Monday evening at the SMHS hospital in Srinagar. Musaib had suffered a teargas canister hit on his head during a protest in Sopore on Sunday.
Tens of hundreds of people from Sonawani, Langate, Wadoora, Seelu, Bomai and other areas of Qaziabad reached the native village of the slain youth and participated in his funeral prayers. Asif was a class 12 students studying at Government Higher Secondary School, Bomai.
Witnesses said that soon after the burial, people demonstrated against the youth’s killing, shouting anti-India and pro-freedom slogans. The protests morphed into a clash with government forces who fired dozens of teargas shells and pellet cartridges to disperse the protesters, injuring 15 people.
The injured were rushed to nearby health centres. The locals alleged that that the forces smashed window panes of several residential houses and damaged private property of local residents.
At least 14 civilians sustained injuries after forces baton-charged the residents of Pahloo village in Kulgam district. The people were protesting against the nocturnal raids by government forces. The forces also used tear-smoke shells and pellets to quell the protest demonstration.
The locals said that the troops also arrested around 15 youths from the locality over the alleged stone-pelting during the ongoing public uprising.
Following the call given by the joint pro-freedom camp of Kashmir, thousands of women participated in all-woman protest rallies carried at several places across Kashmir.
In Tral, the Burhan’s home town, a women’s protest rally was carried out against the civilian killings. Similar rallies were held at Pampore, Kelam, Kharwara, Vessu and Rahmoo areas of south Kashmir.
Hurriyat (G) chairman Syed Ali Shah Geelani and Dukhtaran-e-Millat leader Nahida Nasreen addressed the women participants at Rahmoo village in district Pulwama.
A youth from Papchan village in north Kashmir’s Bandipora district was critically injured after he was hit by a hail of pellets during the clashes that broke out in the village.
Identified as Owais Ahmed, 20, son of Muhammad Shafi Mir of Nusoo, Bandipora, the youth was rushed to Bandipora hospital where from the doctors referred him to Srinagar due to severity of his injuries.
An abandoned forces’ bunker was demolished and set ablaze at Mehjoor Nagar area of Srinagar by angry protesters. Locals said the bunker had been a “hub of immoral activities.”
Late night clashes erupted at several places across Kashmir including Srinagar with protesters pelting the forces with stones. A few persons have reportedly sustained injuries during the clashes.
A youth identified as Asif Manzoor was critically injured at Dalipora village in Pulwama district following the clashes erupted over the forces raids in the village on Monday night. The youth was hit by a teargas shell and was referred to Srinagar.
Minor clashes erupted at Pampore and Shopian town against the civilian killings during the on-going public uprising. Youths hurled stones at the forces, while as, later lobbed teargas shells to disperse the youths.
A cop was seriously injured at Imam Saheb area of south Kashmir’s Shopian district when his pellet rifle accidentally went off. Mudasir Ahmad, a police man from armed police was on duty at Imam Sahib Chowk when accidently his pellet rifle went off and he was hit by a hail of pellets in his abdomen.
He was rushed to district hospital Shopian where doctors stated his condition critical and referred him to Srinagar for advanced treatment.
Medical Superintendent SMHS hospital Dr Nazir Choudhary told Kashmir Reader that 19 injured people from various areas were admitted to the hospital on Tuesday.
“Among them eight people have sustained eye injuries, two of them boys, one from Pakharpora (Budgam district) and another one from Sopore (town of Baramulla),” he said.
According to Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Khan, “there was no curfew imposed in any part of Kashmir valley today (on Tuesday) though restrictions were imposed in five old city Police Stations of Srinagar.”
Meanwhile, according to a police statement, a few incidents of stone pelting were “reported from some areas of Srinagar, Anantnag, Sopore and Handwara.”
“At these places, miscreants assembled on the roads and attempted to disturb the normal traffic and movement of people by pelting stones on vehicles, police and the security forces deployments,” he said.
“While dealing with the situation in village Seer Hamdan, Anantnag where a mob of around 1500 had gathered and started stone pelting on Police and disrupting peace, some persons got injured by pellets of whom one person Naseer Ahmad Mir resident of Seer Hamdan succumbed to his injuries and another lady Mst Jameela stands admitted in SKIMS Soura for treatment,” the statement said.
With inputs from Bilal Habib, Owais Farooqi and Mushtaq Ahmad